Entomology Resources

There are a lot of sources for information about insects around the internet. This list is by no means complete, but will allow you to get started finding good information about insects on the internet.

What You Looking For?


Identification Resources:

When submitting your image of your insect to any of the following resources, please include the following information. Usually directly going to a group that specializes in the type of insect you’re looking at will give you more specific answers to your request. 

  • Where you found the insect / arthropod (Country / State)
  • A high resolution image
  • If a Facebook group, please follow all the rules instituted by that organization 
  • Do not submit medical inquiries.
  • Please remember that someone is taking time out of their day to help you for free! Please be kind and respectful.

Brown Recluse or Not: A team of dedicated arachnologists help you ID your spider pics! And let you know if you’ve got a recluse on your hands.

BugGuide: (just for North American insects)
Upload your picture(s) and a fellow user who is an expert in that group will identify it.
Please no more than 3 requests per day.

iNaturalist: For everywhere else.
Upload your pictures and a fellow user who is an expert  in that group will identify it.

What’s that Bug: A group of bug enthusiasts take your picture and ID your insect. Then they post it on their blog so that other people can find them too.

What’s This Bug?A subreddit where you upload your photos and the community helps you ID them!

FB Groups
Insect Identification: A group with over 60k members all dedication to the identification of insects. 

The Entomology FB Group: The largest group for all things insects on Facebook. With over 140,000 members there’s someone who’ll be able to tackle your bug.

Spider and Bug Questions With the Bug Girl: A facebook group run by TheBugGirl who specializes in spiders.

ColeopteraA Facebook group dedicated to all things beetles!

Moth and Moth Watching: place for just moths! Butterflies get too much attention anyway.

Hymenopterists Forum: All things ants, wasps, and bees!  



Pest and Infestation Resources:

We are prohibited from giving any pest control advice. We are not professionally trained doctors or certified pest control experts therefore we cannot legally give advice about pests. Not only does pest biology vary between states, but the laws do as well. Our community is international, and these all complicate things to a point where we cannot be qualified to answer any questions about pest control

We highly suggest you read this post by Joe about some basic pest control tips. These will help you identify problems so when you reach out to an expert you will be prepared and have all the necessary samples and information for them. 

This article by Nancy will help you assess your risk and your situation as a whole.  

Find Your Local Resources: (United States) http://npic.orst.edu/mlr.html
Generally, universities have extension agents who can also help you.



Classes / Classroom Resources:

Entomology Lesson Plans: Lesson plans developed by Nancy for her Master’s degree thesis. Elementary, middle, and high school level lesson plans developed for the National Science Standards and Next Generation Science Standards.

The Hive Mind: Online classes focused on Entomology. These classes are interactive focused on live Q&A’s, discussions, community building, and lots of ento fun.

The Bug Chicks: Entomologists and educators, Kristie and Jessica create entomology resources for your budding entomologists and also provide school programs.

Ryan the Bug Man: Bringing his collections and live arthropods to schools and focuses on school / library entomology programs.




Beetles in the Bush: Blog run by Entomologist Ted MacRae, which encompasses far more than just beetles

Biodiversity in Focus: Blog run by fly taxonomist Morgan Jackson

Bug Eric: Blog run by Eric Eaton in which he discusses insect biology, behavior, and identification.

Bug Girl: Blog run by Andrea Haberkern about spiders, research, and day to day life as an entomologist.

Charasmatic Minifauna: Blog run by Gwen Pearson, one of the best known blogs in the entomoblogosphere

Compound Eye:  Blog run by Alex Wild, who is a well known ant taxonomist and photographer

EntoHub: Blog run by a large number of undergraduates covering ento news

SpidersnInverts: How to take care of your pet tarantulas.



Insect Conservation Organizations:

Xerces Society: Xerces Society focuses on insect conservation issues in the US. They are a great resource for anyone who is interested in insect conservation.

BugLife UK: BugLife is the UK equivalent of Xerces. They do great insect conservation work.



Insect Keys

Aquatic Macroinvertebrates:   Online keys devoted to insects which live in water.

Beetles of the World: Online identification of beetles.

Canadian Journal of Insect Identification:  Journal dedicated to insect keys.
Vespid keys published in the journal are a favorite of the authors.

CDC Environmental Health Services Keys to Arthropods, Reptiles, Birds and Mammals of medical significance.  Contains a variety of keys to different taxa which are known to spread diseases of medical and veterinary importance in the United States. Commonly used in medical entomology classes as teaching tools; may be out of date.

Discover Life: Keys to a wide range of insects, but mainly moths,  many of which are open-access.

Embioptera family keys: Contains keys to families of Webspinners.

Entomological Society of Canada Maintains keys relevant to identification of insects in Canada

Hymenoptera of the World Keys to the families of Hymenoptera

Manual of Afrotropical Diptera (Currently Unpublished)
When published, these keys will assist in the identification of flies in tropical Africa.

Manual of Neartic Diptera, Vol 1, 2, 3
Keys to flies of the Northern Hemisphere.

Walter Reed Biosystematics Unit: Provides keys to mosquitoes for the entire world, as well as other taxonomic, identification and distribution resources. Keys are tricky to use, and need to be added as security exception in JAVA…but they do work.

Miridae (Seed Bugs) of Texas: Pictorial guide of common Miridae based on BugGuide.

Insectos Inmaduros: Metamorfosis e Identificación
Tiene muchas ordenes de insectos y describe biología y  identificación. Puedes descargar todos PDFs.


See something which should be on here? Let us know, and we’ll add it!
Is there a broken link, or something which doesn’t work right? Let us know, and we’ll fix it!

3 Responses to Entomology Resources

  1. Pingback: Me, elsewhere on the internet. | Joe Ballenger

  2. Pingback: How do you know if a bug has been discovered before? | Ask an Entomologist

  3. Pingback: Sophie Lutterlough: The One Woman Information Bureau | Ask an Entomologist

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